Queen Alia International Airport announces 2021 achievements

Queen Alia International Airport looks back over its achievements from 2021.

Queen Alia

Despite another challenging year for the global air travel industry amidst the enduring COVID-19 pandemic, Airport International Group (AIG) continued to mark significant milestones and lay the groundwork for new successes over the course of 2021.

The year kicked off on a positive note, with Queen Alia International Airport (QAIA) receiving the title of ‘Best Airport by Size and Region: Middle East’ for airports serving give to 15 million passengers. The prestigious accolade was granted to QAIA by Airports Council International (ACI) World for the third consecutive year and the fourth time in its history, based on the 2020 Airport Service Quality Survey. In tandem, QAIA was recognised by ‘The Voice of the Customer’ – an ACI World initiative acknowledging airports that continued to prioritize listening and engaging with passengers during the COVID-19 crisis in 2020.

Reaffirming its pledge to adhere to, if not exceed, minimum environmental regulatory requirements, Airport International Group conducted operations to reduce QAIA’s environmental footprint. QAIA continues to perform as per the Level 3+ ‘Neutrality’ certification of the Airport Carbon Accreditation (ACA) Programme, which was renewed and extended from May 2020 until May 2022. Moving forward, Airport International Group seeks to upgrade QAIA to the ACA Level 4+ ‘Transition’ – according to the objectives of the Paris Agreement – while developing a roadmap for becoming a net-zero carbon airport in line with the global airport industry’s long-term carbon goal.

Throughout 2021, Airport International Group worked closely with its partners – namely the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities and the Jordan Tourism Board – to add low-cost carrier Wizz Air (Hungary) to the QAIA network, along with other newcomers such as AnadoluJet (Turkey), Petroleum Air Services (Egypt), and Transavia France (France), thus underlining a steady commitment to offering diverse direct routes to Jordan to bolster local tourism and strengthen the national economy. Although still below its 2019 destination network, QAIA operated an airline network of 40 scheduled and local passenger carriers flying to 65 scheduled destinations.

By the end of 2021, QAIA had welcomed 4,559,336 passengers – marking a 122.3 per cent surge and 48.9 per cent decline against 2020 and 2019 figures, respectively. QAIA also received 46,603 aircraft movements, which were 92.4 per cent higher and 41.6 per cent lower than the figures recorded in 2020 and 2019, respectively. Additionally, QAIA handled 58,278 tonnes of cargo, prompting a 20.8 per cent increase and 43.1 per cent drop compared to 2020 and 2019 figures, respectively.

As a socially responsible and environmentally conscious Jordanian company, Airport International Group officially launched the executive arm of its philanthropic CSR activities – the Airport International Group Foundation (AIGF) – in October 2021. With a focus on youth empowerment, underprivileged community development and environment, the AIGF aims to implement CSR activities alongside public institutions and local NGOs, in alignment with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).

Credit: Airport International Group (AIG)

Meanwhile, International Air Transport Association (IATA) Consulting – together with SEO Amsterdam Economics – concluded a comprehensive study that Airport International Group commissioned to assess the socioeconomic impact of QAIA on the national economy and local community. The insightful study highlighted the significant role of QAIA in facilitating economic growth by contributing over 2.5 billion (JOD) in 2019 (approximately 8.9 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product), supporting government revenues by 542 million (JOD), enabling more than 238,000 jobs across the Jordanian economy, welcoming over 97 per cent of total passengers traveling to and from the Kingdom by air, increasing air traffic by 132 per cent between 2007 and 2019, and promoting local leisure, business, and medical tourism.

“Though last year (2021) was not without its challenges with the emergence of another COVID-19 variant and fluctuating travel restrictions, I am incredibly proud of our steadfast team and grateful for our staunch partners who never fail to show up for QAIA and the people and businesses that heavily rely on it. Despite the foreseeable future remaining somewhat uncertain, I am confident the QAIA community will continue to rally together to shape an innovative, sustainable and safe airport for everyone passing through,” commented Airport International Group CEO, Nicolas Claude.

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